Weekend Herald

High­lights and low­lights

A look back at the high­lights, ex­changes and blun­ders on the cam­paign trail compiled by Claire Trevett.

- Photos: Dean Pur­cell, Brett Phibbs / Her­ald graphic Politics · Elections · New Zealand · New Zealand First · Winston Peters · Arbeidersparty · Turkey · Simon Bridges · London · Auckland Region · Judith Collins · Jacinda Ardern · Otara · Lyttelton

In­sult of the week

Ju­dith Collins was de­scribed as Na­tional’s ‘ hail Mary pass’ when she took over the lead­er­ship but took it lit­er­ally, stop­ping in at a church for a prayer with all the me­dia film­ing be­fore cast­ing her vote at St Thomas in Ko­hi­marama. The news prompted New Zealand First leader Win­ston Peters to turn to the scrip­tures. With­out re­fer­ring to the in­ci­dent, he sim­ply tweeted Matthew 6: 5- 6. ‘ And when you pray, do not be like the hyp­ocrites, for they love to pray stand­ing in the syn­a­gogues and on the street cor­ners to be seen by oth­ers . . . But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is un­seen.’

Ran­dom en­coun­ters I

If Win­ston Peters had hoped for sal­va­tion from a ‘ cup of tea’ nod from Labour leader Jacinda Ardern, he was to be dis­ap­pointed. The pair have not run into each other on the cam­paign and Ardern has shown no will­ing­ness to help her coali­tion part­ner out. But to­day both lead­ers are due to visit the Ōtara mar­kets. Peters is clearly hop­ing for an early bird ad­van­tage — his sched­ule has him ar­riv­ing early and leav­ing at the time Ardern is due to ar­rive.

The art of the comp- in­sult

When Si­mon Bridges was Na­tional Party leader, Ju­dith Collins took to ex­press­ing her ‘ sup­port’ for him with the back- handed com­pli­ment of ‘ it’s a tough job and I think he’s do­ing the best he can.’ On the AM Show yes­ter­day af­ter a bad week on the cam­paign trail for Collins, a poker- faced Bridges re­turned the favour, say­ing Collins was ‘ do­ing her best.’

Ran­dom en­coun­ters II

Ju­dith Collins was pil­lo­ried af­ter cam­paign staff set party sup­port­ers up as ap­par­ent ‘ ran­dom vot­ers’ for a walk­a­bout down Pon­sonby Road. Since time be­gan, po­lit­i­cal cam­paigns have tried to make their can­di­dates look pop­u­lar by urg­ing sup­port­ers to turn up to cam­paign events, to call talk­back, and vote in on­line polls for their pre­ferred can­di­date. The pres­sure is es­pe­cially high when your op­po­nent has throngs around them wher­ever they go. Sure enough, the same day an email emerged in which Labour Party mem­bers were en­cour­aged to pop into Lyt­tel­ton for Jacinda Ardern’s walk­a­bout. ‘ So come along and go shop­ping, grab a cof­fee and some­thing to eat or just be there to cheer her on as she walks the length of Lon­don Street.’ This time round, it is even more im­por­tant to have a con­tin­gency plan given even nor­mally busy streets in Auck­land have been fairly empty dur­ing the Covid- 19 re­stric­tions. Nonethe­less, next time Collins’ team might want to make it a tad less ob­vi­ous by mov­ing away from the pre- po­si­tioned ‘ or­di­nary voter.’

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